Category Archives: smoothies
Several of you recently asked me to continue doing more reviews of foods and supplements. I am happy to oblige! I often recommend “green powders” to people who are looking to detoxify, improve energy levels, alkalize and more. The problem with green powders is that they taste like grass. I was therefore thrilled to find one that has a crisp apple taste but which is still loaded with nutritional power. This review is for Garden of Life Perfect Food RAW Powder – Apple Flavor. (You can click the link to view it on Amazon.)
I received a canister of this powder last December from Garden of Life. I owe them a huge apology for not posting this review sooner. Other topics seemed to be more pressing, life got in the way, and the powder tasted so good my husband and I consumed it in less than two weeks. Please note that although I did receive free product in exchange for this review, I was under no obligation to provide a positive review. The information shared in this post is purely my opinion, based on my experience with similar products and on my years of training. Since I use the product myself, I feel qualified to share my opinion of both its positive and its negative qualities.
Here are the qualities I love about this product:
- It’s ORGANIC!!!
- It contains no fillers or artificial ingredients
- It contains an unusual blend of nutrient-dense powders from grasses, fruits and vegetables
- It’s sweetened with Stevia and contains no harmful artificial sweeteners
- It tastes amazing – nothing like most green powders
- The grass, fruit and vegetable powders are obtained at low temperatures so their enzymes remain viable
- It’s dairy and gluten-free
- It contains no herbal additives that could interfere with prescription medications
- It’s low glycemic, with only 3 net carbs per serving
- It contains sprout powders and probiotics
- If apple isn’t your thing, Garden of Life Perfect Food RAW is also available in Plain and Chocolate flavors
As we used this powder, we found it blended easily into smoothies and other drinks. (I shared a recipe below.) It tastes good enough to blend into plain water. We enjoyed adding cinnamon and nutmeg to it for an added kick. The bottom line is that this product is an excellent source of trace minerals, enzymes, probiotics, vitamins and minerals, and antioxidants, all provided in a great tasting powder.
It’s price point is under $30 for a 30-day supply, another factor that makes it a winner in my opinion. You can view the product on Amazon here: Garden of Life Perfect Food RAW Apple.
The only negative comment I can make about this green drink is that it absorbed moisture out of the air and solidified in the container after being opened. I recommend storing it in a sealed container of some sort.
Here’s a copy of the nutritional information so you can see how truly loaded this product is:
Please note that people with gluten sensitivity CAN consume wheat and barley grasses. The grasses do not contain the proteins that are problematic for people with Celiac and/or a wheat or barley allergy.
Here’s a recipe using this product:
Good Works Wellness Perfect Food Apple Spice Smoothie
- 1 scoop Garden of Life Perfect Food Apple Powder per serving (recipe makes 2-4 servings)
- 1 diced avocado
- 2 cups coconut water (may use milk alternative, purified water or aloe vera juice if preferred)
- 1 diced organic cucumber (use half a cucumber for a single serving)
- 1 handful organic spinach
- 1 diced organic Honey Crisp apple (use half an apple for a single serving)
- 1 teaspoon organic cinnamon powder
- 1/2 teaspoon organic nutmeg powder
- Optional: Stevia to taste
Blend all ingredients well in a high-speed blender. This recipe makes enough for 2-4 servings. This smoothie is delicious and is loaded with healthy fat, trace minerals, enzymes, probiotics, antioxidants and a great blend of vitamins and minerals. It’s very energizing but is extremely low glycemic.
Have you tried Garden of Life’s Perfect Food Raw Apple Powder? What did you think?
Smoothies are a great way to pack a lot of nutrition into a small package. They are also a potential way of packing an excess of sugar and other unhealthy ingredients into a tiny serving. (Please read The Joy of Fruitless Smoothies for more information on how to create smoothies having zero glycemic impact.)
Here are my top five recommendations to keep smoothies healthy:
- Don’t add too much fruit or other sugar-packed or artificial ingredients.
- Always add at least one serving of dark leafy greens or other vegetables.
- Freeze your fruit or make ice cubes out of organic dairy or milk alternative, veggie juice or herbal tea to avoid needing to use ice cubes made out of unpurified water.
- Use filler veggies such as cucumbers or zucchini to add bulk without adding sugar, taste or calories.
- Use a liquid that provides more nutritional value than water. More information on that is shared below.
Here is my Perfect Smoothie Formula. After the formula, I share more details on unique ingredients to use for each part of the formula:
Good Works Wellness Perfect Smoothie Formula
For a perfect smoothie, combine the following:
- 1 portion of a thickener
- 1-2 portions of liquid
- 1-2 portions of dark, leafy greens or “filler” vegetables
- 1/2 portion of healthy fat
- 1 serving of protein
- Optional: 1 portion of low-glycemic impact fruit
- Optional: Other enhancements as desired
Ideas for each part of the formula follow. Please note most ingredients in the formula – other than the liquid – are optional. All ingredients referenced are organic. Some ingredients appear more than once throughout the list of options. Please only choose each ingredient once. Please also note this formula typically creates two servings.
To create your smoothie, select your desired ingredients. Add the liquid to the blender first, followed by the other ingredients, sliced and diced as needed. Blend well and serve.
1. Thickener Options
- 1/2 a banana (if there is no need to keep the smoothie low glycemic)
- 1 avocado
- 1/2 – 1 cup organic chia seeds (allow to soak 5-10 minutes before blending)
- 1/2 cup of oats
- 1/2 cup nut butter
- 1/2 cup ground psyllium seed (allow to soak for 5-10 minutes before blending)
- 1/2 cup ground flax seed (keep refrigerated to ensure the fats don’t go rancid)
- 1/2 cup organic yogurt (dairy or dairy and soy-free)
2. Liquid Options
- Aloe vera juice (use conservatively, as this can have a laxative effect)
- Coconut water
- Water or Dairy Kefir
- Kombucha (limit if Candida is an issue – read Why Kombucha and Candida Don’t Mix for more info)
- Yogurt (dairy or non-dairy)
- Green Tea or other herbal tea
- Milk alternative (almond, coconut, hemp, etc.)
- Vegetable juice
- On a wild and crazy day … coffee!
These liquid supplements may also be added in much smaller portions. Please be careful to use the recommended amount:
- Herbal extracts
- Colloidal Silver
- Bach Flower Remedies
- Trace minerals
- Any other liquid vitamin, mineral or supplement
3. Dark Leafy Green and Filler Vegetable Options
- Beet, Mustard, Collard, Turnip or other greens
- Swiss Chard
- Bok Choy
- Broccoli (chop finely)
- Peppers of any color, sweet or spicy
- Summer Squash
4. Healthy Fat Options
- 1-3 tablespoons organic extra virgin coconut oil
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup nut or seed butter
- 1/4-1/2 cup nuts (walnuts, pecans, almonds, cashews, pistachios, etc.)
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup seeds (sunflower, chia, flax, hemp, sesame, etc.)
- 1 avocado
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup Tahini
5. Protein Options
- 1 serving protein powder (I recommend avoiding a soy-based powder.)
- 1-2 organic eggs
- 1/2 cup nuts, seeds or nut/seed butter
- 1 serving spirulina
- 1 avocado
- 1/2 cup quinoa (cooked or raw)
- 1/2 cup sprouted beans or lentils (or cooked)
- Organic dairy kefir or yogurt
6. Low Glycemic Impact Fruit Options
Adding fruit is completely optional and is NOT a necessity. Use less than one cup if you choose to add it.
- 1/2 cup any form of berries
- 1/2 apple or pear
- 1/2 grapefruit
- 1 cup cherries (raw, not canned)
- 1 pear (raw, not canned)
- 1 orange
7. Optional Enhancements
Any of the following can be added as optional enhancements. Please follow label instructions for supplements:
- 1 serving green powder
- 1 serving bentonite clay
- 1 serving liquid B complex
- Herbal extract(s)
- Bach Flower Remedies
- Spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, turmeric, Himalayan sea salt, etc.
- Colloidal Silver
- 1/4-1/2 cup kefir grains or probiotic grains
- 1/4-1/2 cup fermented fruits or veggies